Here are instructions on how to start and finish the two mandatory preparation exams in the Examplify app:

Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam

This is the first mandatory preparation exam to make sure your camera and microphone are set up in the correct way to sit your Semester 1 2020 final exam/s with remote invigilation/supervision via your camera, microphone, and screen capture. This preparation exam will take less than 10 minutes and you can do it up to 99 times (including the first time) if you want to ensure everything is correct. Your real exams will start this way too.

Content and Features Preparation Exam

This is the second mandatory preparation exam and is for you to practise using the features in the Examplify app that you will use to sit your exams, such as flagging questions to return to them later and setting your own visual alarm. This exam does not relate to the course you are studying, and your responses will not be saved, marked, or assessed in any way. This exam is available until the end of the Semester 1 2020 examination period and you can do this exam up to 99 times (including the first time) if you want.


When doing the Preparation Exams, use the same laptop/desktop computer you will be using for your real exam/s to identify any potential problems so these can be fixed early.

  • Photo – During the first mandatory preparation exam (the Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam) a photo is taken of you that will be used to verify your identify for your final exam/s. You need to be in good light (the light on your face should be brighter than the light behind you) and your face needs to be clearly visible – do not wear hats of any type and ensure head scarfs or hijabs leave your face clearly visible. If you wear a veil or burqa, you will need to show your face for the photo. You do not need to wear the same clothes, remove your glasses, or have the same hairstyle or facial hair for both photos, because the two photos will be compared biometrically which includes your bone structure.
  • Backup – Examplify automatically backs up and saves your exam to your hard drive every 60 seconds. The exam is saved as an encrypted copy and removed from your laptop/desktop computer when it is uploaded at the end of your exam.
  • Troubleshooting – You should shut down and restart your laptop/desktop computer if:
    • The exam freezes
    • Your mouse is unresponsive/erratic
  • App version – You should have already downloaded the latest version of the Examplify app. If you haven't, please see the related answer: How to download ExamSoft’s app Examplify

Step-by-step guide to the first Preparation Exam (the Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam)

This exam will be waiting for you in the Examplify app. You have received a password for this exam in the email from AskOtago to your University student email address which announced these ExamSoft digital exams on the morning of Tuesday 12 May 2020.

  1. On a Windows laptop/desktop computer, the Examplify icon will be on your desktop. If it is not, click the Windows button at the bottom left of your screen and search for Examplify.
    On a Mac laptop/desktop computer, go to the top left of your screen (where the Apple logo is) and click Go > Applications, then find the Examplify app. Do not move the app to your desktop or the software may not open properly. Once you open the app and see it in your Dock, you can right-click the icon and select Options > Keep in Dock.
    Click on the Examplify icon to open the app.
  2. On the left side of the Examplify homepage/dashboard you will see My Exams, click on Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam underneath, then on the right pane click on the Download Exam button.

    Examplify homepage showing preparation exams
    • If you do not see the Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam, go to the bottom left of the screen and click Refresh Exam List. If you still can't see it, refer to the related answer Preparation exams in Examplify
  3. Once the download is complete, the exam will be listed on the left of your screen under the Downloaded section.

    Examplify homepage showing downloaded preparation exam
  4. Enter the password that was emailed to your University student email address from AskOtago on Tuesday May 12 2020. Note: The Preparation Exam password is case-sensitive so must be entered exactly as shown. It cannot be copied and pasted so you should write it down on a piece of paper.

    Examplify homepage showing where to enter password
  5. If you see the screen below, click the green button saying Ok, I will close the programs.

    Action Recommended screen in Examplify
  6. You will see the Welcome to ExamID screen. Click on the blue Get Started button.

    Welcome to ExamID page
  7. Tick the box for I consent for ExamID to collect biometric data – this will enable a photo to be taken of you that will be compared biometrically to photos taken before each of your exams to verify your identity. Click the blue Next button.

    ExamID consent to collect screen
  8. Without warning, a photo will be taken of you so please stay still, ensure no one else is in the frame, your entire head is in the frame, and your face is clearly visible – you will be given an option to retake the photo if necessary.

    ExamID photo taken
    Once you approve a photo the software has taken, it will automatically continue to the next page unless the camera cannot "see" you, in which case one of the following messages will appear:
  9. Once the photo has been successfully taken, you will see this screen:

    ExamID loading screen

  10. You will be asked to grant access to your laptop/desktop computer’s media devices – this is so the remote invigilator/supervisor can video, record, and screenshot during your exam. If you have a Mac, you may also be asked for Disk Access. To grant permission, click the blue Next button.

    ExamID Allow Media Device Access screen

  11. You will be notified on an orange screen that a secure exam is starting. Click the green Continue button. While it is recommended you disable anti-virus programs, that is not usually necessary for this Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam.

    Warning! Secure Exam Starting! screen

  12. Some information will follow, including an Online Assessment – Academic Integrity notice and exam instructions etc. Make sure you page down and read each page of information, then click Next to continue.

    Exam Notice screen

  13. An orange screen will appear with a "Do Not Start Until Instructed" warning. Click Continue (do this in your real exam/s too - you don't need to wait to be instructed). If you want to see how you appear to the remote invigilator/supervisor at any stage, click on the Monitoring tab at the top of your screen to see the video feed. Clicking anywhere in Examplify exits you from the video feed and returns you to your exam in Examplify.

    Do Not Start Until Instructed screen

  14. On the next screen, click the box beside the words "I am authorized to start my exam" then click the green Start Exam button. When you get to the first question, the exam timer will start – this is also when the timer will start in your real exam/s.

    Start Exam screen
  15. Now you have started the preparation exam and your internet access and access to files and apps on your laptop/desktop computer will be blocked. You will be asked for feedback on your experiences with this exam.
  16. Finishing the exam: If the time set for the exam runs out before you finish, the app will automatically start uploading your exam. If you finished the exam in your own time and are ready to submit your exam, either:
    • Click the Finish button that appears on the right of your screen at the final question, or click on the drop-down Exam Controls menu in the top right of your screen and select Submit Exam.
      Exam Controls options in Examplify
      The next screen will offer two options:
      • Submit Exam by clicking the box beside the words "I confirm that I have completed my exam", then click on the green Submit Exam button, or
      • Return to Exam by clicking Go Back.
    • Note: If you are submitting/finishing your exam but have not answered every question, a window will pop up saying "You haven’t answered all the questions. Are you sure you want to close the exam?" Then you will have two options, clicking on Return To Exam or clicking on Close Exam.

      Return to Exam/Submit Exam options

  17. If you submit your exam, you will see a screen saying "Please wait" and four check boxes that will automatically be ticked in green when:

    • Your answer file is being prepared
    • Exam mode is being exited
    • Your answer file is uploading
    • Your invigilation/supervision (monitoring) file is uploaded

When you submit your exam, your connection to the internet will be automatically restored, and the completed exam and the invigilation/supervision file will automatically upload to a secure server. You cannot reopen the exam.

Examplify uploading screen

You will see a green screen confirming that you have successfully uploaded your completed exam.

Examplify Upload Complete screen

If you click on the green Return to Dashboard button, you will see your completed answer file and the invigilation (supervision) file uploading. The ones that have uploaded will get a green tick. Once the files are all uploaded, a completed box will appear on the left of your screen, with the names of the uploaded files and the green ticks. Do not disconnect from the internet until all the files have uploaded. This could take several minutes. This same process will be used for your real exams but uploading will take longer.

If your upload takes longer than expected you may see the screen below instead, but don’t be alarmed as the upload will continue in the background while the app returns you to the Examplify homeoage/dashboard. This is more likely to appear during your real exams, as the file will be significantly larger than the preparation exams.

Examplify Upload in Progress screen

If you receive an error or alert message on your screen, or are unable to successfully upload your completed exam, a copy of your exam will have been saved. If problems persist and the exam is not uploaded, contact AskOtago (available seven days a week between 7am and 11pm New Zealand time):

Tel +64 3 479 7000 or 0800 80 80 98
Enquiry form
Chat with an AskOtago Service Representative

You should completely close down and restart your laptop/desktop computer after uploading every invigilated/supervised exam (where you are monitored via your camera and microphone).

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Guide to the second Preparation Exam (the Content and Features Preparation Exam)

This exam aims to let you practise using the Examplify app that you will use to sit your real exams. This exam is not remotely invigilated/supervised, but your photo will still be taken as it will be for your real exams.

This exam does not relate to the course you are studying, and your responses will not be saved, marked, or assessed in any way. This 30-minute preparation exam is designed to help familiarise you with:

  • Navigating between questions in the exam
  • Answering the main question types including:
    • Multi-choice
    • Multiple answer
    • Fill in the blank, which includes single, multiple, and matching options
    • True/false
    • Hotspot (where you "pin" a spot on an image)
    • Essay/Short answer
  • Using the tools provided in Examplify, including:
    • Exam Controls
    • Highlighter
    • Calculator
    • Alarm timer
    • The ability to flag questions to return to them
    • Filters (to see your answered, unanswered, and flagged questions)
    • Notes screen (a digital rough-work-only "paper")
    • Adjusting the size of the text
    • Strikeout for answers you believe are incorrect, while pondering an answer
    • How to "mark" answers you believe are correct
    • Viewing exam notices after the exam has started
    • Viewing attachments at the start of and during the exam

This exam is available until the end of the Semester 1 2020 examination period. You can do this preparation exam up to 99 times (including the first time) if you want to.

  • Downloading – An email to your University student email address from on the morning of Thursday May 14 2020 will advise you the Content and Features Preparation Exam is available for download
  • Password – A subsequent email that same morning to your University student email address from will provide you with the password for this exam. Please remember the preparation exam password is case-sensitive so must be entered exactly as shown.

Follow the same steps to sit this preparation exam as for the Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam above. While your photo will be taken, you will not be remotely invigilated/supervised so will not have to grant permission for the app to access your media devices.

If you have any problems or have questions about the preparation exams, contact AskOtago (available seven days a week between 7am and 11pm New Zealand time):

Tel +64 3 479 7000 or 0800 80 80 98
Enquiry form
Chat with an AskOtago Service Representative

Further information

Otago blog: ExamSoft Digital Exams

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Last updated 14/05/2020 02.58 PM

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